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Zander Clark taking inspiration from veteran duo Craig Gordon and Allan McGregor

By December 10, 2021No Comments

St Johnstone goalkeeper Zander Clark admits the exploits of veteran rivals Craig Gordon and Allan McGregor have inspired him to believe he still has plenty time to take his own game to new heights.

The long-serving Saints stopper turns 30 next summer, but he is a relative youngster compared to Rangers number one McGregor, who is 40 next month, and Hearts and Scotland custodian Gordon, 39 at the end of this month.

Clark, who is viewed as Gordon’s successor in the national team, said: “It’s mad that at 29 you can still say you’re relatively young for a goalkeeper. You look at big Craig, he’s got 10 years on me and he’s still performing at the highest level, producing save after save for club and country.

“It definitely inspires you when you see what guys like Craig and Allan are doing. If you didn’t know their age, you’d probably say they’re in their prime at the minute.

“It gives you something to look up to that these boys are still performing consistently at a high level week in, week out.

“It’s down to me to look after my body and do the right things because these guys are at the top of their game. It’s still another 10 years for me until I get to their age.

“Everybody puts a time on when you’re in your prime and when you’re not, but I feel personally I’m going through a good spell of form at the minute and it’s up to me to keep my performance levels high and see where it goes.”

Although St Johnstone are currently struggling at the bottom of the cinch Premiership, Clark’s stock is high at the end of a year in which he has helped his team win a national cup double and won his first call-ups to the Scotland squad.

He said: “It’s nice when you see folk speaking about you because it means you’re doing something well. Getting international recognition, and getting in the squad is pleasing for me.

“It’s something you always want to do, so to have been given the chance to be part of the squad and experience those nights at Hampden, as well as the games away from home, it’s been good and it drives you on to want to keep performing well and be a part of it for longer.”

Clark, who has spent his entire career with St Johnstone, is out of contract at the end of the season and attracting interest from elsewhere.

Asked about his future, he said: “My situation’s been well-publicised. I’m not at the stage where I can update on it at the minute. I’m just trying to focus on helping the team. That sort of personal thing gets put on the back-burner. It’s all about trying to keep performing well and help the team pick up as many points as possible.”